Ford’s Driving Skills for Life (DSFL) program was launched in 2009 in India, after a successful stint in the USA since 2003 and other parts of the world. More than 4500 drivers have been trained in DSFL since 2009 and 50,000 across Asia Pacific and Africa. The program is based on 3 aspects of driving: Safe, Economic and Eco-friendly. The program is customized to suit the region based on the driving culture.
In 2012, Ford India will take the program to various other cities : Ajmer, Chandigarh, Guwahati, Jaipur and Mehsana and will continue to conduct the programs in Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai and Bangalore. Dealerships are also encouraged to conduct DSFL programs and this requires their personnel to be trained by current DSFL trainers. The ‘Train the Trainers’ workshop, one of which was held over the last week in Chennai, will help provide Ford India with an additional pool qualified trainers to help bring in more dealerships into the DSFL program, this year.
“We have always considered it our responsibility not just to produce safer cars, but also to ensure more responsible driving on the roads,” said Michael Boneham, president and managing director, Ford India. “India has one of the highest motor vehicle injury and fatality rate in the world and we believe driver education and refreshment through program such as DFSL can help improve the situation.”
“Involving our employees is an important step for taking the DSFL to greater heights,” said Tom Chackalackal, Ford India’s executive director for Manufacturing. “By training all these new trainers, we will be able to create more DSFL ambassadors to foster stronger relations with our customers, build a stronger understanding of cars among them and more importantly promote driving skills that make our roads safer”.
At a media event held on the 19th of April 2012, Tom Chackalackal and Minnie Menon, a long time Ford loyalist and DSFL evangelist took the pledge to drive safe. The ‘I Pledge to Drive Safe’ campaign is available on Ford India Facebook page where you can take a number of pledges and encourage your friends and family to do the same.
The Chennai TTT workshop was attended by 15 additional Ford representatives who will share the learning with other participants. The participants were trained by Regional Training Partners from South Africa, Derek Kirkby and Nicholas whose interviews you can read here.
Ford India also launched its car buyer guide ‘First Gear’ an in depth coverage of which is available here.
“This is a great initiative by Ford India,” said Ms. Menon. ” I have been associated with DSFL for a year now and I find the program to be informative and aimed at reaching the right people with the right message to help increase responsible driving. Today’s book launch and pledge program only emphasize Ford’s commitment. “